Leap Explains Research on Impact of Community Policing

A yearlong UCLA Luskin study of the Los Angeles Police Department’s Community Safety Partnership was highlighted on KCRW’s Greater L.A. show. Jorja Leap, adjunct professor of social welfare and co-founder of the Watts Leadership Institute, led the evaluation of the program, whose goal is to create a collaborative relationship between police and the community. “The research shows that CSP lowers crime to a greater degree than mainstream law enforcement,” Leap said, adding that the study laid out several recommendations for improving the program. Some civil rights activists fear the CSP program does little to solve systemic problems with policing. Many residents of housing projects where CSP officers are assigned support the program. “If it is reducing crime and it is building relationships and, even though it’s got some improvements to make, residents actually support the idea of CSP, what’s the downside?” Leap said.

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